Rainbo are a well-established NGO and have been active in Sierra Leone since 2003. Rainbo Initiative focus on trying to end gender-based violence in Sierra Leone through both preventative and responsive measures.
Rainbo Initiative were the first, and still are the only provider of free medical and psychosocial services for survivors of gender based-violence in Sierra Leone.
Mission & Vision of Rainbo Initiative
Mission: “We are a well-established, reliable, credible national service provider of quality, free, confidential, medical and psychosocial services with access to justice for survivors of gender-based violence; working together with the Government of Sierra Leone and other partners in maintaining the safety and dignity of women and girls while raising awareness to reduce the incidences of gender-based violence.”
Vision: “The Vision is to transform Sierra Leone into a country where survivors of gender-based violence are supported and safe to heal with dignity, by policy-makers and service providers who understand their mandate and are committed to social and legal justice for women and girls.”
History of Rainbo Initiative
Rainbo Initiative was set up in 2003 out of a recommendation of the 2002 United Nations Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) following the 11-year bloody Civil War. The TRC stated “services should be provided free to those who have experienced physical trauma, torture and sexual violence”. Rainbo Centres were set up in 2003 with UK Aid funding from the UK Government’s Department for International Development, through the International Rescue Committee. Rainbo Centres were set up in Freetown, Kono and Kenema between 2003 and 2005 and are places survivors of gender-based violence can receive free, professional, quality and confidential medical and psychosocial counselling care. Rainbo Centres are based on the Manchester Metropolitan’s Rape Crisis Centres in the UK.
In 2014 the Rainbo Initiative was a created; a national NGO to take over the running of the Rainbo Centres. Since 2014, the Rainbo Centres have been fully supported by the Rainbo Initiative. The Rainbo Initiative has grown over the years from just a few people to now over 60 members of staff.
In August 2017 the Rainbo Initiative started to conduct community engagement and outreach activities to try and prevent gender-based violence in Sierra Leone. These activities included going in to schools, churches, mosques and market squares to educate communities about how to prevent gender-based violence. Data is regularly collected by our outreach staff, building an accurate picture of the gender-based violence issue in Sierra Leone.
In November 2018 two new Rainbo Centres were opened in Bo and Makeni. Rainbo’s outreach activities also starting working in communities near Bo and Makeni.